ACTS OF THE APOSTLES 15:5-12
IN THOSE DAYS, some believers who belonged to the party of the Pharisees rose up, and said, “it is necessary to circumcise them, and to charge them to keep the law of Moses.”
The apostles and the elders were gathered together to consider this matter.
And after there had been much debate, Peter rose and said to them, “Brethren, you know that in the early days God made choice among you, that by my mouth the Gentiles should hear the word of the gospel and believe.
And God who knows the heart bore witness to them, giving them the Holy Spirit just as he did to us; and he made no distinction between us and them, but cleansed their hearts by faith.
Now therefore why do you make trial of God by putting a yoke upon the neck of the disciples which neither our fathers nor we have been able to bear?
But we believe that we shall be saved through the grace of the Lord Jesus, just as they will.”
And all the assembly kept silence; and they listened to Barnabas and Paul as they related what signs and wonders God had done through them among the Gentiles.
The Lord said to the Jews who came to him, “For this reason the Father loves me, because I lay down my life, that I may take it again.
No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord.
I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again; this charge I have received from my Father.”
There was again a division among the Jews because of these words.
Many of them said, “He has a demon, and he is mad; why listen to him?”
Others said, “These are not the sayings of one who has a demon. Can a demon open the eyes of the blind?
It was the feast of the Dedication at Jerusalem; it was winter, and Jesus was walking in the temple, in the portico of Solomon. So the Jews gathered round him and said to him, “How long will you keep us in suspense? If you are the Christ, tell us plainly.”
Jesus answered them, “I told you, and you do not believe.
The works that I do in my Father’s name, they bear witness to me; but you do not believe, because you do not belong to my sheep.
My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me; and I give them eternal life.